Please note: Due to unforeseen circumstances, this event has been cancelled. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.


Join experienced art collector Julian Francis ​in conversation with artists, dealers, curators and conservators, to learn how to start collecting art.  

Over four evenings, Julian will share his do’s and don’ts of being a private collector, from finding your style and building your collection, to purchasing and caring for your works of art. Along the way he’ll share some of his personal favourite artists and provide a glimpse into the often mysterious and secretive world of private art collectors. The café will be open and drinks can be brought into the Learning Rooms. 

  • 28 April –  Finding your scope and Commissioning in style. In conversation with artists, Julian examines why we collect, and what makes a great art collection. He shares how to build a collection centred around your interests and begins to tease out how to get a rationale for collecting – and begin commissioning. Find out how to go about buying art to begin your collection and where to go to find what you want . Learn the the do’s and don’ts of buying art. Julian will  touch on how to know what you’re buying, and how to build a coherent collection.
  • 30 June – Once you have a collection. Julian talks about making the most of it. Talking to curators, he examines how you might lend out works, how to fund a catalogue – and how to write about the collection.
  • 25 August – Julian talks to conservators about how to care for your collection. Learn more about how to frame and display works, how to conserve them, how to keep accurate records and catalogue them. And he touches on when might be the right circumstances to sell or donate work.

Julian Francis lives in Dorset and is a keen collector of art, particularly wood engravings and private press books from 1920 to the present day. He is the author of Tom Chadwick and the Grosvenor School of Modern Art (2013), Rena Gardiner: Artist and Printmaker (2015) and My Brush Is My Sword: The World War Two Art of Anthony Gross RA (in press).

  • People at an exhibition. One girl sitting down and looking at picture.
  • Julian Francis